All Kinds of News for June 07, 2017
The evolving landscape of student referrals and their needs has made it imperative for Equinox RTC to be on the cutting edge of therapeutic support for sexual and gender identity needs. The clinical and direct care teams receive specialized trainings, so the next step was to build the milieu’s understanding and commitment to creating a program of inclusiveness. To that point, Alicia Viani, LCSW, partnered with the Equinox clinical team to facilitate student debate and learning around sexuality and gender with the primary goal being to support an empowered, empathetic peer culture.
Ms. Viani is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a provider of psychotherapy to individual children and teens. A focus within her practice is therapeutically supporting transgender and gender-variant people and their families. Her clinical approach is rooted in mindfulness and body-based practices, aligning well with Equinox’s mission.
Equinox works closely with Solstice East, a “sister” program, three excellent psychiatrists and a phenomenal pediatric endocrinologist to support the needs of students across the gender spectrum. The seminar opened with a discussion on sexuality as an inherent aspect of being human. The students learned how that can include thoughts, feelings, behaviors, beliefs, gender, sexual orientation, love, relationships, spirituality and biological reproductive functions. They were empowered to consider that all humans experience sexualities from birth to death, and these experiences of sexuality are unique to the individual.
As the seminar progressed the residents were challenged to facilitate a community discussion to increase awareness of healthy sexuality on mental and emotional health terms, and in support of building a positive sense of self regarding sexuality. They also explored how to create healthy community culture so that each diverse individual can feel safe, accepted and supported in expressing their unique selves.
Dan Hadley, Clinical Director, MA, LMFT, notes “Alicia is amazing. She holistically incorporates a variety of approaches, including therapies that address the neurobiological impact of stress and trauma. She was a great fit to lead the student seminar on Gender and Sexuality.”
Dr. Kyle Gillett, Executive Director, PhD LMFT, commented, “It’s amazing to see the milieu begin to take ownership of their peer culture. They are now demanding from each other that Equinox be a sacred space where they can be open and vulnerable without fear of judgement. It affirms all the work to watch these young souls share their empathy and nurturing sides so broadly. This is truly a turning point for the growth of the Equinox program from infancy to maturity.”
Dan Hadley concluded, “The milieu holds so much power. Watching these young men embrace their journey and advocate for safe, inclusive support from their peers is powerful.”
About Equinox RTC
Equinox is a leading residential treatment center for boys ages 14-18. Equinox is unique in its focus on Trauma, Loss and Attachment, providing clinically intensive treatment for young men struggling with anxiety, depression, OCD, ASD, learning disabilities, and other emotional and behavioral needs. Equinox offers a combination of clinically sophisticated support with a whole child approach including adventure therapy, integrated Cross-Fit program, and a whole foods diet. Equinox provides a fully accredited school, with broad course selections taught by licensed teachers in a college-preparatory environment.